Modular display stands modeled on buildings in Burkina Faso feature in the first brick-and-mortar store designed by London-based designer Yinka Ilori for his self-titled homewares brand.
The pop-up shop takes over a compact retail space in Shoreditch in the run up to Christmas and features a color block interior to match the products on offer, as slime green walls meet pink and orange floors.
This “more is more” philosophy for color extends to the store’s glossy lacquered product displays, which were designed by Ilori to reference the construction of mosques and houses in Burkina Faso.
“I’m really obsessed with their design language, which is very African, very rich and very uncompromising,” he told Dezeen.
“There’s a recurring use of squares and triangles, and sometimes you see poles sticking out of the structures as well. I found these poles fascinating.
Inside the store, these shapes are reflected in the modular storage units, made of medium-density fiberboard (MDF), each topped with a stepped pyramid.
Strategically placed holes can be used much like a pegboard to add different sized poles and accommodate a changing range of products.
Longer poles can be plugged in for hanging t-shirts and throws, while smaller brackets can hold umbrellas or support shelves for displaying mugs, notebooks, and other lifestyle items.
Bulkier items like the designer’s tableware collection and limited-edition basketballs are displayed on counters clad in ribbed MDF that’s spray-painted with a gradient color to emphasize their curved shapes.
At the entrance to the store, six of Ilori’s hand-painted square stools are arranged in a towering display window that showcases their stackability.
The opening of the pop-up also coincides with Ilori’s latest product drop. With the motto “Remembrance, Togetherness and Play” this includes everything from notebooks and basketballs with sunny, childlike patterns to a collectible version of the traditional Yoruban strategy game Ayo.
In line with this idea, the shop will also host various events for the local community, from an ayo tournament to a Nigerian palm wine tasting.
Opening his first physical store is “an absolute dream come true,” Ilori said.
“My public projects are all about interaction both between the audience and with the work itself, but I don’t often get the chance to interact with people directly and I think it’s time for me to do that” , he added.
“Through the store I can get their feedback on my work and also see how they interact with each of the products and the stories I’m trying to tell with these pieces.”
Ilori launched his homeware brand in 2020 with the aim of reimagining “unexpected, functional household items as works of art” by infusing them with bold colors and patterns that reference his British-Nigerian heritage.
The products feature many of the same patterns he previously developed for his large-scale installations, such as The Color Palace pavilion, which he created with local studio Pricegore for the London Festival of Architecture.